Low-Carbing can get boring after a while...
...which is why Atkins shakes are such a welcome addition to the low carb world! It can be hard to find good options for atkins snacks and drinks, and also quick meal ideas that don't involve cooking an egg or some meat. And you can only eat so many bars...at least that's true with me!
The products that Atkins designs for it's consumers are meant to be a supplement to a low-carb diet full of whole foods such as meats, eggs, cheeses, proteins and vegetables. You will not be able to lose weight or sustain weight loss for very long only using the bars, shakes, etc. That being said, the bars and shakes can be a lifesaver when you are in a rush, are sick of meat and cheese, or just really need a sweet fix.
These ready-to-drink Shakes taste very good, and are as convenient to use as their higher-carb counterparts, such as slim fast or muscle milk light. It is suitable for use on all the different phases of low-carb dieting, even if you are on induction.
Atkins shakes come in packs of 4, and in the following flavors:
Dark Chocolate Royal
Milk Chocolate Delight
Each shake has 15 grams of protein, 4 grams of fiber, 160 calories, and 1 gram of sugar, ringing in at 2 net carbs per shake. Pretty good! There are no sugar alchohols in there, so you won't have to deal with the side effects of that, thank goodness. They also have a good mix of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals mixed in.
Here's a video of a woman starting the Atkins, and using the shakes as part of her program.
But how is the flavor?
If you have ever tried a Burger King shake....well, this tastes nothing like this! Sorry!
We all know that nothing healthy is going to taste like a full-fat, full-sugar counterpart. Otherwise it wouldn't be a diet product. That being said, these don't taste like chalk either. They all taste just as good or better than other weight loss shakes.
All of them taste pretty much like their description. My favorite is the Dark Chocolate and the Mocha. The texture is smooth and rich, and they really taste pretty good if they are served very cold. Howerver, they do not taste good when they are served room temperature or warm, in my opinion. Blech!
Some people even blend it in the blender with a little bit of ice more more of a true-shake texture, and they report that it tastes great that way, although I have not tried it.
Amazon Price: $28.99 $22.95 Buy Now
(price as of Apr 13, 2016)
Is it a drink, a snack, a meal replacement, or a desert?
Well, it can me any one of those three. As long as you stay within your net carb goal for the day, you can use the Atkins shakes however you want.
Remember, they only have 2 net carbs each, so you could easily use them as a drink with a low-carb meal if you ar used to drinking something sweet with dinner, or if you miss that milkshake with your bunless burger.
Many peple use these shakes as a simple, on-the-go meal repalcement, slim-fast style. This really takes the time and guess work out of low carbohydrate eating. Sometimes, I just felt like I couldn't eat one more boiled egg, and needed a sweet fix.
These are also great for a before bed sweet or snack, if part of your old pattern was having something sweet like a bowl of cereal before bed. (Guilty!)
How much do they cost?
Atkins shakes, while not cheap, aren't horribly expensive either. The cheapest way to get them is in bulk on amazon.com. I personally buy almost all of my specialty products on there because your local Wal-mart just can't compete with the prices that amazon can get.
So, if you buy them on amazon, you will pay about 1.40 per shake. If you buy them at Wal-Mart, you will pay about 1.56 per shake (they are 6.15 for a pack of 4 at my local store, plus tax.) The most expensive place to buy these shakes is at the drug store. I was waiting in line to pick up a prescription the other night and I saw a 4 pack of these shakes for 8.15! Crazy.
You can also save on these shakes by watching your sunday paper for coupons. Also, sometimes there are specials on amazon.com.
Can I use Atkins Shakes while on induction?
Yes, these shakes are acceptable for the induction phase of low-carb diets. According to the official atkins website, here is their reccomendation in an article entitled "How to do Induction Right":
To satisfy your sweet tooth, you can have sugar-free gelatin desserts and up to two Atkins shakes or bars coded for Induction (Phase 1).
Can you make your own low carbohydrate shake?
Yes and no. Yes, you can make a low carb shake. But not as low as 2 net carbs. You can use whey protein, almond milk, and other lower-carb and high-fiber ingredients, but you just can't beat the 2 net carbs!
Amazon Price: $16.99 $4.88 Buy Now
(price as of Apr 13, 2016)
A sample induction meal plan using Atkins shakes
Sometimes it is helpful to just have it all laid out for you, so here is a sample induction day meal plan utilizing the atkins shakes:
Sausage patties (0 net carbs) and 2 sunny side up eggs (1 net carb)
Atkins Strawberry Ready to Drink Shake (2 net carbs)
2 cups romain lettuce (4 net carbs)
Grilled Chicken Strips (0 net carbs)
Low carb salad dressing (2 net carbs)
Shredded cheese (1)
Atkins Bar (3 )
1 cup chopped broccoli (4)
1 cup sauteed mushrooms (3 )
Total: 20 net carbs